Jakks Pacific Inc. said Thursday that it had been chosen as a principal North American toy licensee for the popular Japanese Hello Kitty brand of girls merchandise and accessories.

Under the agreement, products based on Hello Kitty and other Sanrio Inc. properties will include figures, play sets, plush toys, indoor and outdoor children's furniture, seasonal products, interactive toys, and other categories related to the Malibu toymaker's portfolio of girls brands.

Jakks expects to begin shipping the new Hello Kitty products to retailers this fall

"The Hello Kitty brand is one of the few licenses in the marketplace that is as relevant today as it was 35 years ago," said Jennifer Richmond, Jakks senior vice president of licensing and media, in a statement. "We look forward to working with Sanrio to launch a full array of innovative and exciting products to further extend this top brand at retail."

Despite the announcement, Jakks shares were down $1.46, or 9 percent, to $14.35 in morning trading on the Nasdaq. The company on Wednesday reported lower fourth quarter results and gave guidance for the coming year that was below Wall Street expectations.

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